Workshop/Summer School in Japan

24-May-2010 - 04-Jun-2010

Application Deadline: February 15, 2010.
OIST ( covers accommodation and travel expenses for
all participants.

Confirmed Lecturers:

* Nadav Ahituv, UCSF: Functional characterization of evolutionarily-
conserved non-coding sequences.
* Peter Arndt, MPI Berlin: Dynamical models describing nucleotide
* Gill Bejerano, Stanford
* Emmanouil Dermitzakis, Geneva
* Takashi Gojobori, National Institute of Genetics, Japan: Genomic
evolution of the neural system.
* Ueli Grossniklaus, Zurich
* Jotun Hein, Oxford
* Nancy Moran, Arizona
* Erik van Nimwegen, Basel
* Howard Ochman, Arizona
* Anirvan Sengupta, Rutgers: Long-range interactions: enhancers and
* Gasper Tkacik, U. Penn: From statistical mechanics to information
theory: tools for understanding biophysical systems.
* Byrappa Venkatesh, IMCB Singapore
* Ting Wu, Harvard Medical School: Ultra-conservation from the
standpoint of genome integrity: from copy-counting to meiotic gene

OIST Summer School and Workshop: Quantitative Evolutionary and
Comparative Genomics 2010

The theme of the 2010 Summer School is the phenomenon of strong (or
extreme) sequence conservation, which will be explored from a
and multidisciplinary perspective, and connections forged with parts of
biology outside of genomics.

We are looking for a set of participants with a broad range of
backgrounds, experimentalist and theorist: for example, biology,
chemistry, computer
science, ecology, engineering, evolution, genomics, mathematics,
or physics. The essential prerequisite is an enthusiasm to overcome
traditional boundaries of your own field of specialization.

Sequence conservation forms the basis of comparative genomics, has
played a pivotal role in biology and medicine, and is likely to become
increasingly important in the eras of abundant sequence data and the
personalized genome. Ultra-conservation has led to a broad
appreciation of
the need for a reevaluation of how the action of selection is inferred
from sequence comparison. It has raised basic questions about the
character of "neutral drift," calling for new quantitative developments
that may be facilitated by the cultures of mathematics, physics,
science, and engineering; however, this pursuit - and the interpretation
of genome sequence in general - ought to be firmly grounded in its
biological context.

With a multitude of whole-genome sequences now publicly available,
ultra-conservation is trivial to exhibit, but so far difficult to
Therefore it represents an ideal topic for a combined Summer School and
Workshop, where the phenomenon can be appreciated by participants of
diverse backgrounds, who can then bring their own perspectives to bear
the problem.

Broad Topic Categories:

* Ultra-conservation: Theory & Experiment.
* Ultra-conserved Elements (UCEs) within Populations.
* Comparative, Evolutionary and Population Genomics.
* Recombination and Genome Rearrangement.
* Neutral and Adaptive Evolution: Proteins, RNA, Regulatory
Sequences, Genomes.
* Experimental Evolution.

The format of the summer school consists of a three-hour presentation in
the morning, with coffee breaks, followed by an hour or two of
in the afternoon. The summer school is aimed primarily at introducing
approximately forty students and post-docs with quantitative
backgrounds -
not necessarily in biology - to the splitting edge of contemporary
comparative and evolutionary genomics research. As such, tutorials
will be
offered to get participants with less-developed quantitative skills or
sparse biological background up to speed insofar as possible; however,
hope that presentations will be intense and self-contained.

Okinawa is a subtropical divers' paradise of diverse ecology and
distinctive beauty and cultural flavor.

OIST provides summer school students with accommodation at Seaside House
and financial support for their travel. Students will be selected
competitively based upon their completed Applications, submitted by
February 15, 2010 to (replacing the "#" by "@" of
course). [ more ]